Fathers in SAP

Posted on September 2015 By Speller International
Fathers Day

​Father’s Day is a special time to celebrate and honour fathers, fatherhood, grandfathers, stepfathers and paternal bonds within a family.

On Sunday 6th September fathers and father figures around Australia and New Zealand got to celebrate their special day, including those in the SAP community! We rounded up a few and asked what fatherhood and Father’s Day means to them – we’ve included new SAP Dad, an experienced SAP Grandfather, a SAP father/son combo and even a SAP Recruiter Dad. A special inclusion are the thoughts on our Director, Nick Speller by his three children.

From the brand new to the old hand, there is a SAP Dad at every stage in this post, and each has a touching (and hilarious) story to tell.

The new SAP Dad

Mark Gawen, SAP Test Manager/ Project ManagerFFFFFF

Your baby boy Byron arrived just a few weeks ago! What are your plans for your first Father’s Day?

My wife Zoe says I can do what ever I like. I think that’s code for “I’ve been too busy with baby Byron so you’ll have to please yourself.” I’ll probably go to Bunnings and have a sausage sizzle.

How has his arrival changed your life?

The biggest change is the realisation that you have someone who is 100% dependent on you. It’s the most important project role I’ve ever had.

Is he showing any signs of potentially being drawn to SAP and what are they?

Oh yes, he ‘Sleeps And Poos’.

Will you sway him towards and SAP career?

He could do worse than a career in SAP I guess, although he’s such a laid back baby I think he might sleep through a few deadlines.

The SAP Grandpa

John Cannell, Senior SAP SD Consultant

How many grandchildren do you have?

I have five grandchildren: 3 belong to my eldest son Scott and his wife Julia (Hannah, 8, Lucy, 6 and Jack, 3), one to my second son Tim and his wife Tanya (Byron, 1), and the most recent from my daughter Lauren and her husband Luke, (Maya, three weeks). Greg, my youngest son, is still enjoying freedom.

How does it compare to being a father for you?

Being a grandparent is more like being chauffeur driven, you get to enjoy the ride from the back seat and allow your children to steer the course. There is something very exciting about sharing in the lives of your children’s children. As parents you transition with your children through infancy to adulthood and when grandchildren come along you can experience participating in their development and growth — with the benefit of an exit clause!

Would you like your grandchildren to follow in your SAP footsteps and why?

While my SAP life has been good to me and provides work that I enjoy and find fulfilling, I would want my children and grandchildren to follow their own aspirations and I would not wish to influence them into any career that did not match their skill set or preference. But business systems and processes (and therefore SAP) is never far removed from anyone’s career path.

What are you plans for Father’s Day?

Just the normal expectation of the extended family coming together at home, probably around midday for a long and loaded lunch. Hopefully the weather will shine for all the Dads.

The Father/Son SAP Combo

The SAP Son (who is also a Dad!) The SAP Father

Andrew Findlay, SAP CRM Consultant Geoff Findlay, Senior SAP FICO Consultant

How did you get into SAP?

A: My dad joined SAP when I was about 16 and spent 11 weeks over in America for training. This resulted in our family having an opportunity to visit him. The bright lights of NYC drew me in. An opportunity to work abroad and see the world. I knew I had to get into this industry. Besides, becoming a famous soccer player hadn’t worked out for me!

G: Early in 1995 I was approached by SAP to join them in a Principal Consultant role specialising in Financials, as I was an accountant and was at that time lead financials consultant for Oracle. This led to me spending 3 month in USA training. SAP allowed the family to come over for two weeks in the middle. Certainly helped that and showed SAP as a family orientated company.

Have you learnt much about SAP from your dad?

A: Since Dad and I work in completely different modules (FI vs CRM), old ways (sorry other SAP FI guys), to the new thinking and technology, I didn’t really learn SAP specific things. He taught me more about real life situations and about life working on projects. We shared stories of frustration and obscure customer requirements. He gave advice early on about how to handle certain situations.

Have you learnt anything from Andrew about SAP?

G: I am always learning from Andrew as he moved into the new world of Java and web based systems. This world moves a lot quicker than R/3.

What do you both like about working in the SAP market?

A: I really enjoy working in the SAP industry. It’s a great product and of course with its limitations. That is the fun part, where I can help customers through problem solving real life scenarios. There are always a 100 ways to skin a cat so to speak, but weighing up the possibilities and what suits best for the situation at hand is rewarding. Apart from the masses of documentation (if someone could get rid of that you would be my hero).

G: SAP was always a great place to work, hard work but good rewards and at least in Melbourne, a good team approach to work and people always helped. Then we could get immediate action on issues from Germany which helped with customer satisfaction, something that has changed in recent years.

How will you both be spending Father’s Day?

A: My Father’s Day will be spent firstly with my two sons. Who knows what they have made for me at kinder and child care this year! Followed by Father’s Day with dad at my brother’s house which is more about the 4 grandsons these days. I’ll end the day with a game of soccer. I’m still playing and chasing the dream! Never give up, right?

G: Two of my boys have sons so we are spending time with them, Pop will relax and watch the interactions of the 4 little ones.

The SAP Recruitment Dad

Chris Oughton, SAP Training and Documentation Recruitment Consultant

Oliver arrived just last week! What are your plans for your first Fathers Day?

Well I play for a soccer team and it was our last game of the season last Sunday so I managed to play and my partner brought the lil man down to ‘watch’ but I imagine he was more focused on sleeping and eating. My partners Mum is also in Australia at the minute to help with Ollie so she was really kind and cooked a lovely home-made meal and I was lucky enough to open a few pressies from the lil guy in the evening!

How has his arrival changed your life?

That’s a great question – it all still seems so surreal but everything seems to now evolve around Ollie, be it when shall we have dinner, go out, do anything really we need to take into consideration has he eaten, slept, is he warm, is he cold, has he filled his nappy! Just so many questions that never even entered my mind! But both Kate and I couldn’t imagine life without him now!

Obviously it’s still early days, but is he showing any signs of potentially being drawn to SAP Change Training Recruitment and what are they?

Well he seems to be a very alert baby and takes a keen interest in his surroundings and what is going on so he may wish to take on a Change role at some point in his life as I think he will have the capacity to be across projects!

Will you sway him towards and SAP Change Training Recruitment career?

Another great question – well if he isn’t a Premier League soccer player by say 18 years old then I could look to suggest it as a possibility!

The Speller children on our Director, Nick Speller

Stephanie, 7 yrs

Christian, 9 yrs

Edward, 12 yrs

How will you celebrate Father’s Day?

S:We will have daddy’s favourite dinner (roast) and give him presents.

C:I will get Dad his Kellogg’s Sustain mixed with cornflakes and toast and give this to him for breakfast with a kiss.

E:I will make dad breakfast in bed and give him presents

What kind of dad is Nick, what makes him the best dad?

S: He is a fun dad because he tips me upside down and flips me over.

C: To me dad is like a brother, he’s always by my side.

E:Dad is a fun loving guy who supports me in whatever I do.

Do you think you will follow in dad’s footsteps and work in SAP recruitment?

S: No, I don’t want to follow in dad’s footsteps!

C: Yes, I’ll be a boss like daddy!

E: I am not quite sure what I want to do… However, I want to have the same sort of personality as dad.